MORE than 200 people have signed a petition against plans for a new supermarket.
Lidl lodged its bid for a new store on Sheffield Road, off Birdwell roundabout, with a proposed new access off Cross Keys Lane before withdrawing the application in December.
The German firm decided to delay the scheme due to concerns received from highways officers, which has resulted in Lidl moving the potential store further along Cross Keys Lane.
However, a petition has now broken the 230-signature barrier – and campaigners have vowed to continue their fight.
Jane Townsend, Labour’s Rockingham ward candidate for the May local elections, said she is ‘vehemently opposed’ to the planning application.
She said: “I went door-to-door with Stephanie Peacock MP last week and heard residents’ concerns first hand – I have the same worries.
“There will be possible detrimental impact upon the existing Hoyland Common shopping area, the land isn’t allocated for retail use in the council’s local plan and highways safety concerns are apparent.
“Also, there will be a loss of green space and there are no obvious mitigations for loss of biodiversity arising from the development of the site.
“Ultimately, the final decision will rest with the planning board and we need to understand that the government’s planning policy framework contains a ‘presumption in favour of sustainable development’.
“I would like to ask Lidl to work with residents to find a suitable alternative site close by – most people are keen to have another budget food store, particularly as local families struggle with the cost-of-living crisis, but not at this location.”
As part of the car park changes, 11 standard 7kW electric vehicle charging points will be ditched in favour of two faster-charging 50kW units.
Leigh Bacon, secretary of campaign group REACH (Rebuilding Environment and Community In Hoyland), believes residents are ‘furious’ with the plan and urged people to sign the petition.
“We are hemmed in by industrial sites on all sides so it’s no wonder residents feel neglected,” she said.
“In the main we as a group try to speak on behalf of our members and the residents of Hoyland.
“Their take is that they’re not very happy.
“They don’t feel that they’ve been consulted enough and it seems that any plan that goes forward from the council is just approved.”
According to Barnsley Council’s website, a target date for the planning board to decide the new application’s fate has been set for May 22.
A public consultation, it adds, ended last Tuesday.
Coun Robert Frost, cabinet spokesperson for regeneration and culture, added: “We recognise and understand the concern of local residents regarding this application.
“As part of our analysis, we will consult with residents and make sure any comments received are fully considered as part of the planning process.
“The original application was recommended for refusal, so the onus will be on Lidl to address the reasons for refusal – one of which was the likely impact on neighbouring residents.”